One conversation. Two people on a first date at a NYC Italian restaurant. An up and coming fashion designer with a hot Etsy boutique, she’d gone to a women’s college and become passionate about women’s rights. A global economic development expert, he believed fervently in the importance of empowering women to the world’s future. Unbeknownst to even them, Marcella had already been born by the time the bruschetta arrived…
And now, today, Marcellamoda has become Marcella and DESIGN THAT MATTERS™ is here.
When we’ve talked about New York City within our brand, we’ve always focused mainly on our design aesthetic that grew out of NYC living. Big bills and small closets! Fewer pieces but better ones!
Today, we begin talking openly about the other aspect of NYC living that has informed Marcella’s DNA from inception – being surrounded by a beautifully diverse community of talented, impassioned people looking to change the world for the better.
As of 4.14.21, count us officially inspired.
As of 4.14.21, after years of thoughtful and careful preparation, count us officially IN!
Marcella is an evolution, a redirection. From the very first day, our mission was to cultivate a community of equally impassioned women, ones that believed doing good and looking good could coexist (and we’re the evidence that it can). It stemmed from our own belief to give back what’s been given to us, to create opportunities in the same places they were created for us. This meant using what we knew best, fashion, to catalyze social change in every part of the planet we touch. To fulfill this mission, we developed three initiatives that we considered to be non-negotiable in an ethical business. Democratizing Design, Social Impact, and Ethical Production, to be pursued simultaneously, are essential to the heart of Marcella’s vision, to create a future where women have a seat at every table:
When I first moved to New York City, I fell in love with its architecture, its edge, and most notably, its minimalist designer fashion. The only thing keeping me at arm’s length however, was its price tag, which was often too steep for the average woman (including me!). As much as I wanted to dress like a cool, edgy New Yorker, I couldn't really afford to do so. That was the driving force for me to create my own brand - the desire to bring quality minimalist fashion to every woman’s wardrobe without her having to break the bank. Because of your enduring support, Marcella has now become a destination for accessible, timeless style.
Social Impact: School Days
One subject that has forever been close to my own heart and that of my co-founder and partner, Andy, is girls’ education. “Why girls’ education?,” you may ask. According to UNESCO, 132 million girls between the ages of 6 and 17 are out of school around the world. Half of those girls of primary school education age live in sub-Saharan Africa. That last fact alone reminds us of the words of African proverb: “Educate a man and you educate an individual. Educate a woman and you educate a nation.” We’ve now partnered with the powerhouse global NGO CAMFED (www.camfed.org) and, from today onwards, with your purchase of each Marcella design, you'll support the cost of a girl going to school for five days. Supporting the school fees, the books, the uniforms, the sanitary pads - not just one of these items but, as tailored by need, everything that a girl needs to go to school for one week. It’s the women-led future we believe and are impassioned to invest in.
What most makes Marcella who we are is our incredible predominantly female team of artisans. I’m no stranger to the hard work every seamstress, cutter, ironer, and pattern maker pours into developing each piece, as my grandmother was one of Bulgaria’s most prominent fashion designers. We believe it’s our responsibility to invest in the lives of our garment makers for all they’ve brought to ours. Everyone involved in the production of Marcella’s garments enjoys a truly living wage, a standard 40-hour work week (and paid overtime), 20 days paid vacation annually, paid sick leave, free health care and social security benefits.
With a grateful heart, we thank you for continually cheering us on, from Marcellamoda’s humble start and onwards. We sincerely wouldn’t be here without your enduring love and support. Today marks the birth of Marcella, what we hope will be the spark in creating a new narrative in fashion for the benefit of women and girls everywhere.
We’re passing you the torch, all we need is you alongside us to help light the way.
Siyana Huszar, Marcella Creative Director and Co-Founder